This post could easily be titled, “Gifts That I Actually Want for Myself” (family members, take note!) When it comes to my own wishlist, most of the items on it have to do with making my kitchen prettier or powering up my weekend baking projects. So I took all my personal faves as well as a few things on my wishlist to come up with a roundup of the best gifts for home cooks.
Like many other passionate home cooks, for me, few holiday gifts can hold a candle to the delight of opening up some new gadget or appliance to take for a spin in the kitchen. Jewelry’s great, but I’d take a set of shiny new knives any day.
No matter the skill level of your recipient, there’s a little something here for everyone who loves good food: your S.O. who still raves about the salted butter you both spread on baguettes in Paris? (or is that just Adam, lol.) Well, he must have this chic butter dish for the breakfast table. Your recent college grad is going to need this gorgeous matte green Kitchenaid mixer in her life. And the bestie who considers cheese and pinot noir to be a proper dinner? I found the perfect serving board to elevate her game.
Scroll on to shop my favorite gifts for home cooks. If you’re lucky, you just might be the recipient of one of the delicious creations your gift inspires.
Kitchen Aid Artisan 10-Speed Stand Mixer
This exclusive new shade, made in partnership with Hearth & Hand, is the perfect splurge for the home cook who values form as much as function. The 5-quart bowl can hold up to 9 dozen cookies in a single batch. And, it features 10 speeds to thoroughly mix, knead and whip ingredients quickly and easily. I use my own KitchenAid Stand Mixer almost daily, and it consider it a true must-have for anyone who loves to create in the kitchen.
Kitchen Aid Artisan 10-Speed Stand Mixer, $299
Crate & Barrel Cooper Glass Canister
I just scooped up a set of these for the open shelving in my own kitchen, and I’m obsessed. Perfect for storing dry goods like flour, sugar, grains, and oats, they’re a design-driven way to keep your most-used ingredients within easy reach. I love the beautiful mango wood lids, and pro tip: if you have an extra, use it to store cotton pads or q-tips in the bathroom.
Crate & Barrel Cooper Glass Canister, $16.96-$22.95
Esker Calendula Hand Cleanser
The prettiest, most pampering soap for the countertop—this is truly holiday gift worthy. It’s infused with detoxifying, naturally antibacterial essential oils like Clove, Palo Santo, Litsea and Helichrysum, transforming the post-dinner cleanup into a nightly ritual that’s actually luxurious.
Esker Calendula Hand Cleanser, $52
Eden Grinsphan Eating Out Loud Cookbook
Out of all the great cookbooks published recently, this one might be my favorite. Middle Eastern flavors have totally won me over as of late, and the spicy, bold, fun, and creative dishes throughout this book just make me want to get in the kitchen and play. Think roasted whole heads of broccoli topped with herbaceous yogurt and crunchy, spice-infused dukkah; a toasted pita salad full of juicy summer peaches, tomatoes, and a bevy of fresh herbs; and babka that becomes pull-apart morning buns, layered with chocolate and tahini and sticky with a salted sugar glaze.” Yeah, it’s exciting.
Eden Grinsphan Eating Out Loud Cookbook, $23.72
Hearth & Hand With Magnolia Oversized Carved Wood Tray
This mango wood beauty is simple enough for the minimalist in your life but with its carved handles, feels special, too. I love the angled sides that help corral everything on your cheese board as you carry it to the coffee table (don’t you hate it when olives roll off the side onto the floor?) It’s equally perfect for grouping vases or candles for a quick table centerpiece.
Hearth & Hand With Magnolia Oversized Carved Wood Tray, $39.99
McGee & Co. Reactive Glazed Stoneware Pitcher
Oh, how I love a good pitcher. Endlessly versatile—it’s a chic vessel for water on the table, for sure, but also as a vase for winter branches or on its own, as a simple yet perfect bookshelf accent. The reactive glaze and handmade vibes make it feel like a meaningful gift that’s bound to become an heirloom.
McGee & Co. Reactive Glazed Stoneware Pitcher, $38
David Castro Hussong & Jay Porter The Baja California Cookbook
One of my favorite food memories is from a trip that Adam and I took to Cabo a few years ago. We’d just arrived in town after a long morning of travel, and we were famished. As we settled into an outdoor booth carved into a rock overlooking the Pacific, our waiter brought out a tray of fresh-from-the-oven fish tacos, in paper thin corn tortillas topped with fried cod that was so hot I almost burned myself, smashed avocado, zesty cabbage and a squeeze of lime. As I closed my eyes and took a bite, I remember thinking, this is heaven. Since it may be awhile before I find myself back in Baja, I’m desperately hoping to bring a bit of that magic home with this cookbook as my guide.
David Castro Hussong & Jay Porter The Baja California Cookbook, $18.79
Shoppe Amber Interiors French Butter Dish
Okay, get this: You fill the bell with softened butter and add an inch of water to the crock. Close the crock and the water creates a seal, keeping the butter spreadable, no fridge required. Amaze, and now I’m left wondering: why do I not have a french butter dish in my life? This one is so my style with a raw clay exterior and food-safe glazed interior.
Shoppe Amber Interiors French Butter Dish, $60
Brightland Olive Oil
I sampled a bottle of Brightland when they launched last year, and I am here to tell you this is an olive oil to SAVOR. Fruit-forward and full of flavor (whoa alliteration) this is what I love to give the person who has everything. Even if they’re not a total foodie, they’ll swoon over how good this bottle looks on their kitchen counter.
Brightland Olive Oil, $29.60
Jayson Home Banda Spoons
‘Cause when we spend this much time in our kitchens, even our wooden spoons should be beautiful. Hand-carved in Morocco from smooth, beautifully grained walnut wood, these long-handled utensils are perfect for serving up a salad at the dining table… or put them in a stoneware crock next to the stove, and they’re ready for stirring, scooping, or sampling.
Jayson Home Banda Spoons, $10-$14
Dear Keaton Brushed Black Cutting Board
Just when I thought I didn’t need another cutting board, THIS gorgeous one catches my eye and I realized that I must have it for my collection. With its minimalist Scandi vibes, I’ll be propping this one against my kitchen backsplash for an eye-catching vignette.
Dear Keaton Brushed Black Cutting Board, $52
Chad Robertson Tartine Bread
Do you think the at-home sourdough bread craze will continue? I certainly hope so. One of the silver linings of this past year has been all the people waking up to how much fun it is to take on a challenge in the kitchen. Chad Robertson, of Tartine fame, is considered by many to be the foremost bread baker in the country, and here he shares step-by-step instructions (with photos!) to demystify the process for all of us. This is a perfect gift for someone who’s been talking about learning to bake bread but hasn’t fully taken the plunge.
Chad Robertson Tartine Bread, $19.39
Anthropologie Loaf Pan
Speaking of bread, how cute is this gal? This loaf pan instantly elevates your basic pumpkin bread or a simple pound cake, turning it into something worthy of gifting (or devouring on the spot.) Though I have several loaf pans as it is, I feel that this one must be added to my collection, stat.
Anthropologie Loaf Pan, $28
Terrain Cinnamon Sugar Soft Pretzel Baking Mix
This is for that friend who says she “LOVES to cook,” but also finds herself kind of lost when it comes to actually making a recipe. You know her. But in all reality, I would also really love to receive this too, because I don’t always feel like making a full batch of yeasted dough from scratch but really love the idea of mixing up a batch of cinnamon sugar soft pretzels on a Sunday afternoon. So come to think of it, this is a perfect gift for pretty much anyone.
Terrain Cinnamon Sugar Soft Pretzel Baking Mix, $24
Magnus Design Natural Stone Mortar & Pestle
Carved from white marble or black granite, this mortar and pestle is a useful investment and statement piece for any gourmand. With a minimalist design, it’s decorative enough to sit out on your kitchen counter, but durable enough to grind spices, mash garlic, whip up guacamole, pesto, or even nut butter by hand. It’ll last for generations, and it’s a useful tool that also encourages hands-on kitchen techniques.
Magnus Design Natural Stone Mortar & Pestle, $90
CB2 Lockjaw Blue-Green Burl Wood Chef’s Knife
Splurge with this handcrafted high-carbon steel chef’s knife known for its strength and edge retention. Each blade is heat-treated, then fitted with handmade green burl wood and stainless steel handles. The more you use the knives, the more the blades develop a blue-grey patina that deepens with age.
CB2 Lockjaw Blue-Green Burl Wood Chef’s Knife, $279
Williams Sonoma OXO Spiralizer
Start spiraling (in the good way) with this dishwasher safe spiralizer. Use it on a wide range of fruits and veggies, including zucchini, potato, cucumber, carrots, onion, cabbage, butternut squash, beets, apples, pears, and more.
Williams Sonoma OXO Spiralizer, $43.95
This post was originally published on November 18, 2020, and has since been updated.
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